Suicide mortality among youth in southern Brazil: a spatiotemporal evaluation of socioeconomic vulnerability

Braz J Psychiatry. 2020 Jan-Feb;42(1):46-53. doi: 10.1590/1516-4446-2018-0352.


Objective: To conduct a geospatial analysis of suicide deaths among young people in the state of Paraná, southern Brazil, and evaluate their association with socioeconomic and spatial determinants.

Methods: Data were obtained from the Mortality Information System and the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics. Data on suicide mortality rates (SMR) were extracted for three age groups (15-19, 20-24, and 25-29 years) from two 5-year periods (1998-2002 and 2008-2012). Geospatial data were analyzed through exploratory spatial data analysis. We applied Bayesian networks algorithms to explore the network structure of the socioeconomic predictors of SMR.

Results: We observed spatial dependency in SMR in both periods, revealing geospatial clusters of high SMR. Our results show that socioeconomic deprivation at the municipality level was an important determinant of suicide in the youth population in Paraná, and significantly influenced the formation of high-risk SMR clusters.

Conclusion: While youth suicide is multifactorial, there are predictable geospatial and sociodemographic factors associated with high SMR among municipalities in Paraná. Suicide among youth aged 15-29 occurs in geographic clusters which are associated with socioeconomic deprivation. Rural settings with poor infrastructure and development also correlate with increased SMR clusters.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Bayes Theorem
  • Brazil
  • Cities
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Risk Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Spatio-Temporal Analysis
  • Suicide, Completed / statistics & numerical data*
  • Time Factors
  • Vulnerable Populations / statistics & numerical data*
  • Young Adult